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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

It's All In Your Head (Literally)

Writer’s block come in many shapes and forms. Sometimes your brain is as empty as that blank screen in front of you. Other times you have a million ideas and no idea how to develop them. Its when you have the perfect outline but one little part has you stuck or you are stuck in the middle of your story and you have no clue where to take it. Writer’s block can come from boredom of your characters, you don’t hate them, you don’t like them, you just want them to go away and never come back. The worst is when your brain gets stuck on how much you think everyone is going to think your story sucks. 

First off, tell your brain to shut the fuck up! Your story does not suck. Get that out of your mind and remember why you are writing. You love your idea and want to see it come to light. That is all that matters, not what some imaginary people think.

Anyway, here are some things I do to help kill my writer’s block:

  1. Exercise. It boosts creativity like no other. It might sound kind of weird but no matter what exercise I am doing ideas just seem to flow the whole time. Also, studies show, that even just walking improves both convergent and divergent thinking, the two types associated with enhanced creativity.  
  2. Be productive. If the words aren’t coming, clean your bathroom, do the dishes, fold the laundry. 
  3. Step away from your computer, your notebook, your story. Sometimes you just need a break. Grab a coffee, watch some TV, and go back to it later.
  4. Step away from the computer once more and reach for a notebook. The computer can be distracting. With Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and just the internet in general, it’s too easy to slack off on your writing and allow for the writer’s block to grow. Physically writing out your thoughts fully engages you in your writing.
  5. Music. Music. Music. I write everything with a soundtrack. I write essays, research papers, stories, reports, you name, I write it with its own set of tunes. Music gets my creative juices flowing. 
  6. Get on Pinterest. People are constantly posting writing prompts. They are pretty awesome. Writing about something that wasn’t your original idea could help bring your story to life. Or, even better, it might turn into your story.
  7. Ask other people. I did. I was stuck with my latest blog post and I asked my Facebook friends. Ask your friends, ask people on social media, ask your mom or dad or sister or brother or significant other. Ask a kid, my kiddo gives me some funny ideas. 
  8. Change your scenery. If you always write in your kitchen, move to your bedroom. Leave your laptop at home, grab a notebook, and go to a park. 
  9. In the same step as changing your scenery, while you’re out there, people watch. Go all Harriet the Spy, and create stories for the people around you. Take their actions and interpret them for your story. Create a world for these people.
  10. Stop waiting for perfection. Margaret Atwood said, “If I waited for perfection, I would never write a word.”
  11. For me, the most effective help for my writer’s block is to pick up a good book and read. Sometimes all you need to do is lose yourself in someone else’s story. It will inspire you.

I really hope these work for you! Good luck on any and all of your writing endeavors.